Sunday, July 11, 2004


It really isn't that difficult to make changes to the way the MLB All Star Game is selected.  It is just reorganizing what is taking place already.

First....what is the "All Star Game"??  Is it a game where the fans hook up their dream matchups?  I mean, what is better than having an outfield with Barry Bonds, Ken Griffey Jr and Sammy Sosa???  Three guys who've hit over 500 HR in their career.  If it was based soley on first half merit....Sosa wouldn't be there.  If the All Star Game is for the fans....then let the fans have their say.  I mean, the only league where the fans have less of a say is in the NFL [where fans used to have NO say].  But that is called an "All Pro Game".  What a "pro" and a "star" are are too different things.  In tennis, Lindsay Davenport is a pro.  Anna Pornakova is a star.

But, there has always been fan travesties in the voting.  I will never deny that.  Was Cal Ripken Jr the best shortstop all those years in the 90s??  Probably not.  Or even Roberto Alomar?  Ozzie Smith??  All of that is up for debate.  Remember, Nomar Garciaparra led the voting for AL shortstop most of the spring and he hadn't played a game yet.  And add to that the Yankee connection.  Since the Yankees are the biggest thing going....of course their players will get more votes.  New York is by far the nations largest city.  If every citizen in the New York area voted for Jason Giambi as 1st baseman ONCE....then every citizen in Kansas City would have to vote Mike Sweeny 20 times to even equal that total.  And no one outside of KC would even think of voting for Sweeney.

So...let's do this instead.  Have the managers and players vote on who they think should represent the respective leagues in the All Star Game.  Then let the fans pick the starters.  Cool??

Pick a day for the players to vote on the best of the best.  On that day, each player will get their ONE ballot and whom they think is their starting 8 on each a few starting pitchers, long relief and closer.  From those ballots...comprise the 30 guys for each league's All Star roster.  If there needs to be the ol' "one guy from every team" rule....then do that.  There is your All Star team.  Have that ready in late June.  Then, let the fans vote from those players who starts that game.  Get rid of the "punch ballots" that are sooooo 1970s and 1980s.  With the internet around [which is how most of the fan voting takes place] it would be easier to compile the fans vote.  And for the fan that goes to the games....set up internet voting booths or kiosks around the ballpark. 

If you wanted to....put on that fan ballot the final 5-8 guys from each league that just missed the cut.....and let the fans vote 2 from each league to make the squad. 

That way....there shouldn't be 7 of the 32 players on the AL team be Yankees.  Think about it...7 are Yankees and you must allow 13 other players as the one allotted per team on the roster...and that left just 12 for doubles for other franchises.  This way...guys who deserve to be there will still be there...and fans get to vote who they want to see start. 

Sure.  That would probably keep Sammy Sosa out of Tuesday's game.  But, would also keep Jason Giambi out of it too. 


steve921161 said...

I voted for one Yankee to start in the All Star Game, and he's an ex-Yankee.  Soriano didn't have much competition for 2B in the game.  The only Yankee who I considered voting for was A-Rod, but since he received so many votes anyway, and some other 3B were having great years, I decided between Hank Blalock and Melvin Mora instead.

The outfield of Sosa, Bonds, and Griffey didn't appeal to me that much.  I voted for Bonds, Griffey, and Lance Berkman 25 times.  I almost decided on Moises Alou instead of Griffey.  If Sosa isn't even the best outfielder on his own team, I don't think he deserves to play in the All Star Game.  The only exception for this is if Sosa and his teammate are having better seasons that the other outfielders in the National League.

steve921161 said...

In his last year, Cal Ripken Jr. made the All Star Game as a starter despite a .240 batting average, and a low number of home runs and runs batted in.  It's quite obvious that many fans disagreed with me since they voted for him, but I think that's going too far.  Troy Glaus of the Angels deserved to start over Ripken; Glaus totaled 41 home runs for the season, and dominated Cal in just about every offensive statistical category for the year.  I believe Cal was also voted in as a starter the year before over Glaus, but was injured so he might not have started.  Glaus led the AL in homers with 47 that year, had a .284 batting average, over 100 walks, compared to ugly numbers for Ripken once again.  I don't have a problem with the million other All Star games that Cal played in, since he played well in those years, but he didn't play well in his last two years, which in my opinion doesn't make him an all-star for those seasons.  Reward Ripken in the future by putting him in the Hall of Fame for his past achievements, but please don't keep the current best players from starting in the All Star Game.